Friday, 17 October 2014

The University Guide

If you are trying to decide where to go to university, who offers the best modules for your course or even what course to take when you get there, check out the University Guide from The Guardian.

Using the University Guide, you can browse subject tables, look at specialist institutions, get top tips and great advice.

Click here to find the help you need.

Image: velk0, Flickr
Source: The Guardian

If you are already a student and would like your essays or dissertation proof read, check out our editorial services just for students on our website.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

CQC Guidance to Compliance

We have pulled together two important documents from the Care Quality Commission that are relevant to our healthcare clients.

These guides are designed to help providers of health and adult social care to comply with the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 and the Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009.

The first is called the CQC's 'Guidance to Compliance' and states the outcomes and outputs that the CQC is expecting to see when registering a new provider, and also when it checks the compliance standards of a registered provider. It is available from their website by clicking here.

The second is guidance about the CQC's Regulated Activities. This document helps healthcare providers decide what activities they need to register for when completing their application form for registration with the CQC. It is available from their website by clicking here.

Image: Must be Art, Flickr

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The CQC and access to patient's records

The CQC's work helps to keep people safe and helps care improve. As part of that, the Care Quality Commision needs to look at records for a number of reasons. For example, they check that the provider is complying with the regulations regarding record keeping, care planning, consent, cooperating with other providers, and management of medicines. They also have to report on how providers handle patient information.

The CQC reports that "media stories this week [10th October] about Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors looking at care records as part of inspections have sensationalised and misrepresented an important part of the inspection process. The Daily Mail was entirely wrong to describe this aspect of our work, which help us protect patients from poor care, as 'snooping'.
Parliament asked the CQC to do this important work. Inspectors handle many types of sensitive personal information every day and abide by a code of practice, just like GPs. To assess record keeping and care planning, it is appropriate that this happens.

"All CQC staff receive training on the code of practice when they join the organisation. The role-specific Inspector training contains additional confidentiality training, which includes specific training on accessing medical records. As well as detailed guidance to support the code and assist our inspectors in translating it into everyday use, we also have a one-page 'key-issues on confidentiality' document that is provided to all members of our inspection team. It is common practice for this document to be the focus of pre-inspection discussion to ensure that everyone is familiar with it.
Inspectors already check medical records in hospitals and care plans in care homes. This work helps us to assess the quality of care. Above all else, we are always on the side of people who use services and we believe this element of our inspection process reflects that and is in their best interests."

Next round of healthcare providers for inspection announced

Taken directly from the CQC's News Section - accessed 14th October 2014

The CQC have announced the next group of acute, community health, mental health and independent providers to be inspected between January and March 2015 as part of their new approach.
The inspections – which are carried out by a mixture of inspectors, clinicians, and experts by experience – will assess whether the service overall is: safe, effective, caring, responsive to people’s needs and well-led.

Following the inspection, each provider in acute, community health and mental health will receive an overall rating of either: outstanding, good, requires improvement or inadequate. Additionally, each of the core services such as maternity and accident and emergency, will also be rated in the same way to provide performance information at a service, hospital and trust level.

Core services in the mental health sector are different to those in the acute sector. The services we routinely inspect include: neuropsychiatry, services for older people and psychiatric intensive care unit and health based places of safety.

The independent sector will receive ratings from April 2015.

The providers listed below are being inspected for different reasons. These include trusts that are hoping to secure foundation status, hospitals that are priorities for inspection and those that are low risk, following CQC’s analysis of information, following up on concerns raised regionally, a commitment to inspect different types of trusts in different parts of the country and following up on concerns raised by other regulators.

Acute hospitals
  • Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust
  • King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
  • Liverpool Women’s NHS Foundation Trust (specialist provider)
  • Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust
  • University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust
  • University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust
  • Warrington and Halton NHS Foundation Trust
  • Weston Area Health NHS Trust
Combined acute and community
  • County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust
  • Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust
  • Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust
  • York Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust
Community health
  • Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust
  • Peninsula Community Health
Mental health
  • Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust
  • Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust
Combined mental and community health services
  • Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust
  • Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust
  • Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust
  • Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust
Independent providers
  • Barlborough NHS Independent Treatment Centre
  • BMI Blackheath hospital
  • Chilston clinic
  • Clifton Park hospital, Ramsay Healthcare
  • Harley Street clinic (independent hospital)
  • Nottingham Independent Treatment Centre
  • Nuffield Health Bristol – Chesterfield Hospital
  • Spire Liverpool hospital
  • The Spencer Private hospital

Too much variation in dementia care services , say CQC

Taken directly from the CQC's news page ( - accessed 14th October 2014)

A major review into the care provided to people living with dementia by the Care Quality Commission found an unacceptable gap in the quality of care that means people are at risk of experiencing poor care as they move between care homes and hospitals.

The CQC carried out a themed review of dementia services in 129 care homes and 20 hospitals across England, looking specifically at four areas: how people’s care needs were assessed; how care was planned and delivered; how providers worked together and how the quality of care was monitored.
In about 29% of care homes and 56% of hospitals [the CQC] inspected, [they] found assessments were not comprehensive in identifying all of a person’s care needs and the impact this has on people living with dementia.

In about 34% of care homes and 42% of hospitals, [the CQC] found aspects of variable or poor care regarding how the care met people’s mental health, emotional and social needs.

Cracks in the pathway, published [on the 13th October], found when people are admitted to hospital via A&E there is too much focus on a person’s physical health needs. There is also poor sharing of information between health professionals, people living with dementia in care homes and hospitals may not be able to tell staff about their pain and there is a lack of understanding and knowledge of dementia care by staff.

The report adds that supporting both the physical health and mental wellbeing of a person – as well as managing known risks such as falls and urinary tract infections– can help reduce avoidable admissions to hospital and unnecessary long stays in hospital.

Commenting on the findings, Andrea Sutcliffe, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, said:

“People living with dementia, their families and carers have every right to be treated with respect, dignity and compassion.

“Our review found some great care, delivered by committed, skilled and dedicated staff. But this is not the case everywhere or even within the same service meaning too many people are at risk of poor care. This has got to change.

“A wealth of guidance exists to drive the delivery of excellent care for people living with dementia. We need to make sure that every care home and hospital achieves the high standard of care we see in the best services.

“Our new approach to the regulation and inspection of health and social care means that we can celebrate good care, identify where improvements are needed and take action where necessary so that people living with dementia, their families and carers can always be confident about the care they receive.”

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said:

“There can be no excuse, and no hiding place, for poor care within our NHS – we are focusing on improving the lives of dementia patients and their families as never before.

“The CQC play a vital role in improving care through their tough new inspections and it’s vital that they continue to shine a light on any poor practice so that we can drive up standards throughout the country.”

Jeremy Hughes, Chief Executive at Alzheimer’s Society, said:

“The inconsistency of care found here means many people are rightly worried about being admitted to hospital or having to move into care.

“However, we know there are many care homes and hospitals that are getting it right by training their staff in person centred care and making their homes and wards more dementia friendly. Developing staff and helping them understand the needs of people with dementia is vital if we are to improve the care people receive.”

Professor Gillian Leng, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Health and Social Care at NICE, said

“It’s vital that the excellent care highlighted in this report is replicated everywhere across the country. People with dementia deserve the best quality of life in their old age. With NICE’s range of guidance available to all, there is no excuse for standards of care to fall short.”

Some of the other findings of Cracks in the pathway include:
  • In about 27% of care homes and 56% of hospitals [the CQC] found aspects of variable or poor care regarding a lack of understanding and knowledge of dementia care by staff.
  • In hospitals, there was limited evidence to show that staff considered the person’s emotional and psychological needs, and how this affected their mental health and wellbeing.
  • In about 27% of care homes and 22% of hospitals, [the CQC] found aspects of variable or poor care in the arrangements for the sharing of information.
  • Available guidance is not being used effectively and there is a failure to manage known risks such as falls, urinary tract infections and malnutrition.
Following the report, CQC is committed to:
  • appointing a new national specialist adviser for dementia care;
  • training inspectors across all inspecting teams to understand what good dementia care looks like so that their judgements of the performance of providers are consistent and robust; and
  • including a separate section in hospital inspection reports that shows how well the hospital cares for people living with dementia.
If you are looking to register a healthcare service or a care home with the CQC, please contact the Words Worth Reading Ltd team to find out how we can support your application process. 

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Your change to view the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta

The four surviving copies of the Magna Carta from 1215 are being bought together for the first time in history next February as part of an event to mark the 800th anniversary of the signing of the historic document.
The Magna Carta (Great Charter) was agreed to by King John in 1215, as his barons revolted and civil war was imminent. By signing the document, John acknowledged that the king was not above the law, it also granted a range of rights to English citizens. Many consider The Magna Carta to be the foundation of democracy in Britain. 
Two of the surviving 1215 Magna Carta documents are kept at the British Library, one of which was severely damaged in an 18th-century fire, and which has been carefully restored using new technology. One is currently at Lincoln Cathedral, and one at Salisbury Cathedral. On 3 February 2015, they will be brought together at the British Library.
To have all four documents together is a very special opportunity, this is the first time in history this will happen. The documents were all written by different scribes, we know this because of the different handwriting. Once finished, they would have been sent out to various recipients. It is not known how many copies were created originally, but there are the only copies to survive from the Medieval period. 

The Magna Carta is considered to be one of the world’s most influential documents, it has become a symbol of liberty and the rule of law. Now the British Library is offering just 1,215 people from around the world the chance to view the four documents side by side on 3 February 2015, via a ballot. Winners of the free ballot will meet the historian Dan Jones, and will be taken to view the four original Magna Carta manuscripts on display together. 
Once this one-off event has taken place, the Lincoln and Salisbury copies will then return to their home institutions for further, separate exhibitions.

Image: Justin Henry, Flickr

Friday, 3 October 2014

Warwick is University of the Year 2014/15

Warwick has been named the University of the Year for 2014-15. The results were published in the Good University Guide, part of the Times and Sunday Times.

Obviously, those who work at the University are very proud to be starting the new school year with such an accolade. The award is made even more special as Warwick University is approaching its 50th anniversary celebrations.

Meanwhile, Durham was named Sports University of the Year.

Image: j.o.h.n Walker, Flickr